A new Senate bill designed to boost the ailing real-estate market is aimed at encouraging international investors to buy America.
The bill, co-sponsored by Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Mike Lee (R.-Utah) would grant a U.S. visa to international investors who agree to spend at least $500,000 on residential real estate here.
This Senate bill would require buyers to pay cash for the homes to qualify for the new “homeowner” visa.
They’d also need to pay U.S. taxes and spend at 180 days a year in the country, and can’t work here or take out home-equity loans against the properties. In return, they’d get to live here for at least three years.
The idea is for this program to improve the housing market nationwide.
Foreigners seem to have more confidence in the U.S. real estate market than Americans do. Almost half of buyers surveyed by NAR cited the profitability or safety of their investments as the main factor that persuaded them to buy.
“With the economic distress in Europe,” said Miller, “people are still looking for safe havens for investing and the U.S. is perceived globally as safe.”